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Welcome to the Zarthani.net H. Beam Piper mailing list and discussion forum. Initiated in October 2008 (after the demise of the original PIPER-L mailing list), this tool for shared communication among Piper fans provides an e-mail list and a discussion forum with on-line archives.
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David "PiperFan" JohnsonPerson was signed in when posted
18:01 UT
From the Archives: "Martians, Martians and Freyans"

Another post from the PIPER-L archives here, this time from way back in September 1997, by Nathan Brindle, who was also the administrator of the old mailing list.

Nathan had some thoughts about the Martians of "Genesis" and the potential implications they might have for the Martians of "Omnilingual" and perhaps even the Freyans of "When in the Course--."

Subject: Martian origin of Terro-humans (and maybe Freyans???)
From: Nathan Brindle
Date: Wed, 10 Sep 1997 13:53:49 -0400

One thing you might want to consider in re the Martian origin of
Terro-humans would be the story "Genesis" in _Worlds of H. Beam Piper_.
While Carr's note at the beginning puts it into the Paratime universe, I
see nothing specific in the story that places it absolutely into Paratime;
it could as easily be considered part of the TFH, particularly considering
the physical similarity of Martians and Terrans as described in
"Omnilingual". I never saw anything in "Omnilingual" that would indicate
that the two races were so different as to be different species altogether.
 I also think Carr didn't know what he was talking about half the time when
he wrote these forewords and little prefatory blurbs, as you can see by
looking at my contributions over time to this list :) so I have no problem
placing "Genesis" into either series, <particularly> because of "Omnilingual".

In re the Freyans, I've often wondered why Beam didn't give the Freyans
some kind of mythological creation story (e.g., "Why are we here and how
did we get here?") which might have been the kind of thing that
technologically-savvy Federation citizens would have recognized as a story
about humans being taken from Earth to Freya by "aliens" back in the midst
of pre-history, or even as a story that would be linkable to the Martian
origin theory. If he'd wanted to link WITC with "Genesis" he could have
done it like this: The first expedition to colonize Earth failed (as far
as the people back on Mars knew) and so they decided that it was impossible
to colonize Earth (maybe because of the gravity differential, which Beam
completely ignored). Therefore they turned their sights to escaping to
another solar system, developed a hyperdrive (or even slowships would have
sufficed I suppose), and managed to get at least one colonizer ship off (to
Freya) before Mars became unlivable. For whatever reason this Freyan
colony also decivilized (who knows why; plague, warfare, famine) and had
just managed to get itself back up to a medieval kind of economy by the
time the Federation crew came along. Thus it would be possible that the
two races would be interfertile. (Again notice how <I've> conveniently
ignored the gravity differential problem:)

Of course this is speculation and I have no idea if Beam even considered
it, but if you <really> want to go whole hog you may as well dream big :)
I think someone mentioned once that WITC might have been a first cut at a
story that Beam <really> wanted to place in the Paratime universe (which he
did, of course, with "Gunpowder God" et al.) but was afraid might be
considered too derivative and thus unsaleable (as he would later be told
regarding "Fuzzies and Other People")...and WITC <really> isn't that great
of a story to begin with...


Nathan's original message is available here:



"Lord Kalvan is a Martian." - Jackson Russell, H. Beam Piper Mailing List and Discussion Forum, July 6, 2015
Edited 09-27-2020 18:02
David "PiperFan" JohnsonPerson was signed in when posted
02:48 UT
Interesting new (2019) collection here:


It features stories "written by the unsung women authors of yesteryear" so nothing by Beam but that cover illustration is Kelly Freas's rendering of Martha Dane from the original publication of "Omnilingual" in the February 1957 issue of ~Astounding~:


(Freas's widow--his second wife--wrote the Forward for the collection so she may have had something to do with choosing that image.)

Still, Beam's portrayal of Dane in "Omnilingual" has always seemed to me to be one of the indications that he was "ahead of his time" in so many ways. It's nice to see him recognized for that here, even if only tacitly.


"A lot of technicians are girls, and when work gets slack, they're always the first ones to get shoved out of jobs." - Sylvie Jacquemont (H. Beam Piper), ~Junkyard Planet~
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